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Use Singapore model to develop Nigeria, World Bank consultant, others tell FG

A World Bank consultant and former Director-General of the Nigerian Institute for Social and Economic Research (NISER), Prof. Olu Ajakaiye; President of Nigeria Association of Macroeconomic Modelers (NAMM), Prof. Adeola Adenikinju; a former consultant to the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), Prof. Akin Iwayemi; the Dean of Faculty of Economics and Management Sciences, University of Ibadan (UI), Prof. Abiodun Folawewo, and other scholars, yesterday, urged the Federal Government to use models and adequate data in planning for the country to develop like Singapore and other developed economies.

They made the call during the opening ceremony of a two-day hybrid conference organised by NAMM, which was held at the seminar room of Centre for Petroleum, Energy Economics and Law (CPEEL), University of Ibadan.

The programme has the theme: “Global Shocks and the Emerging Economic Fallout: Implications and Options for African Economies.”

Iwayemi lamented that various shocks, both global and domestic ones, are not good for the country.

He said that for the country to develop like Singapore, it needed to increase its productivity and capacity.

He added that planning with data and models is foundational to making economic decisions.

Ajakaiye said: “The first thing we should do is to improve the productivity of the Nigerian economy by undertaking policies and programmes that will solve the fundamental problems of the economy.”

The World Bank consultant said economic modellers must understand the working of the system and be conversant with the working of the economy.

”The modeller must be able to distil the key messages not to lose the audience and carry stakeholders along to get optimum results from a policy,” he added.

Adenikinju, who said optimum decision-making must be grounded in models and evidence as done in developed economies, said: ”The reason for the association is to develop capacities in evidence-based policy-making. One of the problems we have in Nigeria is that our policies have not been driven by evidence. In Singapore, policies are driven by evidence and models.”

On his part, Folawewo said with right modeling, Nigeria could be developed like Singapore and even outshine it.

Source: The Guardian